Thursday, March 14, 2019

Country roads

Fayetteville NC – Steaming trays of fried okra, hush puppies, grits and gravy, turnip greens and other southern delicacies tempted our tastebuds at supper tonight as we browsed the buffet at the Golden Corral across the way from our hotel. We are definitely not in Canada any more!
Warm southern greetings this morning from Doris, our server, started our day pleasantly in Charlottesville, and off we headed toward Thomas Jefferson’s famed residence at Monticello, just outside the city, for a quick visit. When we arrived and saw crowds of people filing off tour buses, and the impressive array of visiting choices at the ticket counter, we realized “quick” was not going to work. To have a proper look, we’d be better off coming back on the way north again when we could give this world heritage site our unhurried attention.

So, off we went in the direction of Fayetteville, North Carolina, opting to travel along state highway #15 rather than those crowded interstates. The lovely countryside and less congested traffic were our reward. Not only that, but as we continued southward, there were more and more signs of spring! We rounded a curve and there on a hillside was a sunny yellow clump of daffodils, and a bit further on, fruit trees adorned in a froth of blossoms. The drab beige of yesterday’s fields was mingled with green sprouts and even a few expanses of pure emerald green. Lovely.

Shortly after crossing the state line into North Carolina, we arrived in Oxford, and as we drove through on its main street, we passed some magnificent antebellum mansions, complete with stately columns and formal gardens. They reminded us of some of the homes we saw in New Orleans.

Getting through Durham was a challenge. The maps we had with us indicated a spaghetti pile of roads, highways and interstates, and we did experience a few glitches, but that’s all part of the adventure, right? We emerged on the other side and eventually, thanks to the patient GPS lady, got to our hotel, so all’s well that ends well.

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